In history, policing has been associated with various cases of brutalities and misconducts. During the ancient times, police officers have been known to use excessive force and rude language in handling cases mainly involving citizens. This was a normal way in which police dealt with most cases in the past and they operated in such a manner so as to achieve more control over the citizens. Policing which is now almost in every country all over the world was initially introduced in France in the early 17th and 18th century. During this time, policing operated by receiving orders from the nation state.
This form of policing was then adopted by countries that were neighboring France but later on; during the 19th and 20th century policing spread to most parts of the world. This resulted to the increase in cases of police brutality with most of the citizens being tortured and harassed by the police officers. Such cases of brutalities were however on the rise whenever the citizens tried to hold a demonstration. For example there were high cases of brutalities witnessed during the Pullman strike of 1874, Lawrence textile strike (1912) and the steel strike (1919) (Lawrence: 139).
Other cases of police brutality were witnessed during the African American civil rights movement of the 1960s. The African American movement faced stiff resistance from the police during this time as they tried to pursue for their justice and equality rights. This then resulted to increased tension between the police and the African American community and in the process; a Black Panther Party was formed. The motive for the formation of the party was mainly to oppose the way the police officers treated Blacks.
This sparked violence between the members of the Black Panther party and the police resulting to the death of 34 citizens and 15 police officers. Causes of Police Brutality Police officers are usually allowed to use some force to a certain degree while in their line of duty but most of them have been discovered to be abusing and misusing such powers. Most police officers feel that they are above the law and can do whatever they want to each and every citizen. Also the aspect and culture of the police officers is to blame for the rise in cases of police brutality.
For example the police officers are protected whenever they break the law by the Blue Code of silence (Ross: 71). Rising cases of deaths and casualties on the police officers while in their line of duty has also led to increased cases of brutality. In most cases brutalities have been known to occur whenever the police as well as the citizens are heavily armed. The bodies and commissions that are formed to investigate cases of police brutalities are to blame for their biasness. Most of these commissions usually defend the police officers whenever such cases are reported to them by claiming that the officers acted within their rules.
An example of this is the police brutality cases in Chicago in which out of 10,000 cases reported; only 19 of them came out positive. Revenge is also another cause leading to increased cases of police brutality. For example incase a police officer is killed by an African American citizen, the police officers will in turn revenge this on the entire African American community. Such incident happened once in New Orleans when one police officer was killed by an African American man and the police officers responded by spraying bullets on the entire African American community.
Dealing with police Misconduct Police misconduct can be dealt with by setting up complaint centers in which the victims of the alleged act will be able to report their cases. Such cases should then be investigated and those police officers found guilty should be brought to justice. These centers should be independent and should not be linked to any security agencies. Some organizations have also come up in order to monitor the way the police officers handles cases involving citizens. Such organizations include the Cop Watch and Amnesty International (Jeffries and Hahn: 39).
These organizations usually ensure that the police officers are held responsible for their actions. Conclusion Cases of police brutality are on the rise in most countries all over the world. Efficient ways of combating it should therefore be set out as soon as possible. This involves mandating more independent organizations to carry out investigation related to police brutality (Morris and Villa: 256). Citizens should also be encouraged to report cases of police brutalities on centers set out solely to carry out such exercise. Work cited
Jeffries, Judson, and Hahn, Harlan. Urban American and Its Police from the Postcolonial Era through the Turbulent 1960s. Boulder, Co. University Press of Colorado, 2003. Lawrence, Regina. The politics of Force: Media and construction of Police Brutality. Berkeley, CA. University of California Press, 2001. Morris, Cynthia, and Villa, Bryan. The Role of Police in American Society. A Documentary History. Westport, CT. Greenwood Press, 1999. Ross, Jeffrey. Making News of Police Violence: A Comparative Study of Toronto and New York City. Westport CT. Praeger Publisher, 2000.